Primary stent placement for infrarenal aortic stenosis: immediate and midterm results.
PURPOSE: To evaluate the safety and the long-term clinical and hemodynamic results of primary stent placement of atherosclerotic calcified stenosis of the infrarenal aorta. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Between July 1996 and July 1999, 15 patients (nine male, si- female; mean age, 53.9 years) with symptomatic, calcified aortic stenosis were treated with primary stent placement. Patients underwent abdominal aortography and bilateral lower extremity arteriography. Follow-up was performed in all 15 patients. Technical success was defined as residual stenosis of less than 30% or a resting trans-systolic pressure gradient of less than 10 mm Hg after stent placement. Clinical patency was defined as the absence or improvement of symptoms after stent placement. Hemodynamic patency was defined as a normal triphasic Doppler waveform in the common femoral artery, an ankle-brachial index greater than 0.90, or the absence of a thigh-brachial pressure gradient at rest in either limb. RESULTS: Technical success was achieved in 13 of 15 patients. The two patients considered to be technical failures had resting trans-systolic pressure gradients of 12 and 13 mm Hg, respectively, after stent placement. After the mean follow-up of 36 months, primary clinical and hemodynamic patency rates were 85% and the secondary hemodynamic patency rate was 100%. Two of five symptomatic recurrences during the 36-month follow-up period (range, 12-46 months) were a result of aortic restenosis and were treated with repeated percutaneous transluminal angioplasty. None of the patients required aortic surgery. Complications of the primary procedure included one puncture site infection, one pseudoaneurysm, and one distal embolization, which delayed discharge of three patients. There was no morbidity during the secondary interventions. CONCLUSION: Primary stent placement as treatment of calcified infrarenal aortic stenosis proved to be safe and also provided durable long-term clinical improvement.